City of Pitt Meadows
12007 Harris Road
Pitt Meadows, B.C., V3Y 2B5
Severe Weather - Summer
On July 28, 2009 the temperature in Pitt Meadows hit a new record daily high, reaching 32.2 degrees Celsius. Over the last several years, temperatures in parts of Europe and North America have reached record highs that have resulted in illnesses and sometimes even deaths. Severe heat can cause heat stroke and dehydration, and is also a factor in poor air quality, which can be a problem for those with respiratory difficulties.
Hot, dry weather also increases the risk of fires, due to dry vegetation that can easily ignite. Wildfires start when dry grasses and trees are set aflame by lightning or by human negligence, such as not properly extinguishing campfires. Each year, wildfires cause destruction of property and natural resources, and cost taxpayers millions of dollars in firefighting costs.
What you can do
In severely hot weather, remember the following guidelines:
Also remember that hot weather can increase the risk of fires in urban, rural and wilderness areas. Always report any fire, regardless of size, to the fire department immediately by calling 911. For areas around Pitt Lake or outside city boundaries, call the Forest Fire Hotline at 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 on most cellular networks. For more information on wildfires and fire safety in Pitt Meadows, visit our Interface Fire page.
Remember to follow these fire safety rules during hot weather:
Open fires are banned in Pitt Meadows, so bonfires, pit fires or outdoor fireplaces are not permitted at any time. Read more about the City's Burning Bylaw [PDF - 36 KB].
What to expect during a heat wave
During extreme heat waves, the City will offer "cooling centres" for people to drop in and cool off. These centres are air conditioned public buildings such as the Pitt Meadows Family Recreation Centre and the Pitt Meadows Library. Residents are also encouraged to cool off at Harris Road Pool or the free waterpark at Harris Road Park.
Learn more about the Pitt Meadows Hot Weather Reponse Plan [PDF - 141 KB].
Q & A
What are the dangers of the heat?
The main short-term dangers are dehydration from not drinking enough water, heat exhaustion and heatstroke.
Who is most at risk from the heat?
Seniors, infants and young children, those with existing chronic medical conditions (such as heart or respiratory problems), people with mobility problems, and those who abuse drugs or alcohol are most at risk. People who are normally fit and healthy can also raise their risk by exerting themselves in the heat, for example by taking part in sports or athletics.
How should I protect my children?
Babies and young children are particularly at risk from the dangers of hot weather and the sun. They should be closely monitored because they are more vulnerable than adults. Keep these guidelines in mind:
Parents should also be aware of the need for these precautions when sending their young children to school or daycare.